[USS Charon, Holodeck]
A gentle breeze brushed by causing Shiarrael's short raven hair to
flutter as she stared at the scenery. The air tasted and smelled wrong-
but the visual was stunning and realistic. For a short moment she
almost forgot she was standing in the middle of the holodeck. With a
shake of her head she twisted around and made her way to the center of
the parade ground. Several tall buildings lined the stone pavilion-
banners fluttered on lines that circled the area. Soldiers ran drills
in the opposite corner and Shiarrael sighed. Even if it wasn't real she
couldn't help but feel a bit nostalgic.
The sound of the holodeck arch opening caught her attention and she
redirected her gaze at the young Romulan woman now entering. "Farien,
come here." Shiarrael said and then asked "do you recognize this
Aerv recognized the place all too well. Like every Galae cadet she had
spent many a long a weary hour here, the last of them not so very long
ago. It had been a very long time since even the most die-hard
traditionalist in the Empire had tried to make a case for drill being
useful in itself, but, depending upon the militarism of the regime, a
fondness for parades might flare up. Though not actually - or at least
officially - at war, such a fondness was now in effect.
"I recall it vividly Rekkhai," she replied, "especially in my feet. May
I ask its purpose here?"
Shiarrael looked at the clear sky and inhaled deeply- she wanted to
believe but the stale holodeck air kept the realism from overtaking
her. It was a disappointment but even this amazing technology had its
limits "you have performed well since you came aboard this ship. I'm
certain it must not be easy for you to work among hevam and thaessu" she
looked at Aerv and cracked a smile. "This is within my rights- even if
we do not wear the same uniform." Shiarrael held up a small granite
container and then tossed it to Aerv "serve the empire well Aerv. Even
if it requires you to kill me one day. Perhaps then you can live with
fewer regrets then I."
Scooping the container from the air without taking her eyes from the
Captain, Aerv kept her face entirely still. "My service with the Kiith
Mrevhoqq'ghi has accustomed me to the company of many species Rekkhai",
she said, buying a little time to think. "As for uniforms, I am assigned
here in the Emperor's name, you are my Captain. I see no conflict. It is
mnhei'sahe. Holding to that, I regret nothing." She held up the
container. "Shall I open this, or simply keep it Rekkhai?"
"Keep it?" Shiarrael studied the woman. 'What an interesting
question' she thought. "It is yours to do with as you please." Her
eyes refocused on the young holographic soldiers running their drills.
She smiled briefly and then nodded at Aerv. "Jolan'tru erie'Arrain."
Turning around she called for the arch and left.
Aerv looked around the huge parade ground again. the Captain must be
homesick indeed if she nostalgic for this place. She glanced down at the
object in her hand and shook it gently, listening to the the little
objects within jingle, then stowed it in a belt pouch. Erie'Arrain
indeed! Aerv gave brief thought to asking the computer if it could
conjure up some holographic Galae`Enriov to formalise the matter. '"Then
may your new rank bring great deeds and glory to yourself and to the
Empire,"' she recited aloud and laughed, but the Captain's method was
better suited to the circumstances.
"End programme," she called, and watched with satisfaction as the
illusion shimmered into nothingness. 'Time for breakfast,' she decided,
'a special breakfast under the circumstances'. Strolling to the Mess
Hall she hoped to meet a Vulcan crew-member so she could favour them
with the smile she bestowed on everyone else.